Leta’s Book Review: Crescent City: House of Earth and Blood by Sarah J. Maas

Two years ago, I read House of Earth and Blood for the first time. I loved it and sped my way through it. Unfortunately, it took two years for the next book in the series to come out and I realized that I would need to reread it in order to understand what was going on.

That leads us to February 2022. I picked up House of Earth and Blood again and decided that I wanted to write this review so that I could review the second book as well and convince others to read them.

House of Earth and Blood is a hugely emotional novel. Bryce Quinlan experiences such a horrific loss and must struggle through the grief threatens to bury her at the bottom of a bottle. Her journey is important to see in a character, as her grief is realistic. It doesn’t happen all at once. It strikes her in painful moments. Hunt Athalar, the other main character, is dealing with other heavy emotions. Honestly, this is the main reason I loved re-reading this book. I knew most of the plot from a fantasy standpoint and was able to focus in on the moments of character building for these two. They were great moments, allowing the characters to grow in the ways they needed.

It’s also a novel about Fae, as all of Sarah J. Maas’s books have been. The difference in this novel is that Fae exists alongside humans and a large variety of other species that we get to see on page. In A Court of Thorns and Roses and Throne of Glass, humans and Fae are usually the only races seen interacting with each other (apart from a couple of encounters). I loved the idea that all of these beings would be separated into Houses: Earth and Blood, Sky and Breath, House of Many Waters, and House of Flame and Shadow. Loyalty and citizenship are tied to one’s House, which is very interesting as this novel takes place in a world that isn’t all fantasy. It’s urban fantasy set in a world other than our own.

I cried hard while I read the ending, both the first and second times. It’s gut-wrenching and beautiful in nearly every way. It also opened the doorway for a world of possibilities in the second book. I hated having to wait so long after the first time. Now, I’m sitting here weeks after reading House of Earth and Blood (life’s been crazy and this blog has fallen to the sidelines), and I still haven’t read the sequel. It’s here beside me, but I haven’t had the courage to pick it up. Hopefully writing this all down will help me to sort out my thoughts as I think about all the spoiler-y things I can’t tell you here, and I can finally read House of Sky and Breath. I hope that you decide to join me on this emotional journey.


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